Quirky, unique, exciting – you name it, and Ohio is likely to have it, especially when you visit these top-rated tourist attractions.
In the early 2000s, while we were still wearing hipster jeans and denim hats, the Ohio Tourism Division changed its state slogan to “Ohio, so much to discover.” The tagline is likely to leave some people scratching their heads, wondering how much there is actually to see in Buckeye State. It turns out there are a lot of them. Of course, Ohio isn’t known for its towering mountains or ocean views. But like each of the fifty cool United States, Ohio has a rich past that colors its present reality. These are Ohio’s best attractions, guaranteed to make a lasting impression.
9 Stan Hywet Hall and Gardens
Before becoming a museum in 1955, Stan Hywet Hall and Gardens housed the Seiberling family. Father Franklin Augustus made his fortune as a co-founder of the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company and had his huge 70-acre estate built for his wife, Gertrude. She wanted her home to be heaven on earth for her growing family, as well as the heart of social gatherings in the Akron area.
Ultimately, the Stan Hywet Hall and Gardens contained an opulent 64,500 square foot Tudor house, ten beautiful gardens, a veranda, and two service houses. After FA’s death, the house opened to the public. Guests continue to explore the huge property and its significant architectural and horticultural achievements during the American industrial age.
- Address: 714 N Chemin de Portage, Akron, OH 44303
- Hours: Tuesday to Sunday, 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
- Admission: Adults $ 12, children $ 6-17, dogs $ 5
8 Cedar point
There is something intoxicating about slowly ascending hundreds of feet in the air before collapsing at the speed of gravity toward earth, and anyone looking for that thrill should put Cedar Point on their bucket list. The amusement park is the second oldest in the United States, breaking an impressive number of roller coaster-related records over the years. Adrenaline junkies will find their solution on Steel Vengeance, a hybrid coaster holding the world record for the greatest “airtime” (feeling of weightlessness). There are 16 roller coasters in total, each with unique features that make a trip to âMidwest Disneylandâ a must-see in Ohio.
- Address: 1 Cedar Point Drive, Sandusky, OH 44870
- Hours: Open every day in summer from 10 am to 8 pm; limited hours for Halloween weekends in the fall
- Admission: One-day admission from $ 49 / day
7 Cuyahoga Valley National Park
Ohio isn’t generally known for its stunning natural scenery, but Cuyahoga Valley National Park is a testament to the exceptional beauty that nature lovers can only find in the Midwest. The 33,000-acre park contains approximately 100 waterfalls, including the highest in the state, the 65-foot Brandywine Falls.
There is a diverse landscape of forests, valleys, wetlands, ravines and meadows, which visitors can enjoy on foot or by train through the park. The abundance of trees makes the Cuyahoga Valley a great place for leaf viewing during the fall months, while spring and summer color the meadows and valleys with an array of colorful wildflowers.
- Site: Located on the Cuyahoga River between Cleveland and Akron
- Hours: Open 24 hours a day, seven days a week
- Admission: To free
6 American Museum of Signs
Cincinnati locals and tourists flock to the American Signs Museum to take aesthetic photos in the neon-lit Wonderland. For nearly a century, the museum has been dedicated to preserving the often overlooked culture that is exhibited in the unique signs that illuminate our daily lives.
The museum opened in 2005, but the ever-growing collection of panels forced owner Tod Swormstedt to find a more spacious location in historic Cincinnati. There are now nearly 4,000 cataloged items on display, including a 1963 McDonald’s sign and a 20-foot-tall statue of genius.
- Address: 1330 Monmouth Ave, Cincinnati, OH 45225
- Hours: Wednesday to Saturday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Sunday 12 p.m. to 4 p.m.
- Admission: Adults $ 15, Youth 13 to 18 $ 10, Children free
5 Toledo art museum
Discover the impressive collections on display at the Toledo Art Museum. The museum has been open since 1901 and currently has over 30,000 works of art in a wide variety of mediums. Efforts are underway to expand the museum in order to further develop its stock of international creations.
Forty-five renowned galleries house masterpieces by Claude Monet, Vincent VanGogh and several Renaissance artists. A huge, visually striking glass pavilion opened in 2006 to pay homage to the museum’s extensive collection of glass art. With nearly 400,000 annual visitors, there is something that will speak to the soul of every guest who walks through the doors.
- Address: 2445 Monroe St, Toledo, OH 43620
- Hours: Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.
- Admission: To free
4 Ohio State House of Correction
Despite its release the same year as Forrest Gump, The Shawshank Redemption became famous for representing the life of an inmate in a corrupt prison. The film was shot at the Ohio State Reformatory, a historic prison with a busy past that closed due to poor conditions in the early 1990s.
Today the prison functions as a museum and invites guests to take guided tours or explore independently. People can enter the cells of famous criminals and hear stories from a former detainee about life inside.
- Address: 100 Reformatory Road, Mansfield, OH 44905
- Hours: Thursday to Sunday 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
- Admission: From $ 19
3 Franklin Park Conservatory
Discover climates around the world at the Franklin Park Conservatory. Outside, beautiful botanical gardens occupy 33-acre Franklin Park, filled with eye-catching displays of flora at its best. The conservatory itself contains over 400 species of plants spread across six greenhouses.
Guests are transported to a thriving rainforest, Himalayan mountain biome, and Pacific Islands, all in one day. A rotating bonsai collection showcases the talents of master bonsai artists, and extensive educational programs aim to educate children and adults about the importance of conserving the natural world.
- Address: 1777 E Broad St, Columbus, OH 43203
- Hours: Open every day from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Admission: Adults 13 to 59 $ 19, children 3 to 12 $ 12, seniors 60 and over $ 15
2 A Christmas story house
Visitors will find their Christmas cheer anytime of the year at the Christmas Story House and Museum. The house has been restored to its cinematic glory and contains the relics the film is known for – including the fishnet leg lamp and Randy’s suffocating snowsuit. Guests can even stay overnight and re-enact their favorite scenes from the iconic holiday movie.
- Address: 3159 W 11th St, Cleveland, OH 44109
- Hours: Open every day from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Admission: Adults $ 15, Children 3-12 $ 11, Seniors $ 14
1 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has inducted hundreds of artists over the decades. The museum preserves the legacy of rock and roll with its collection of instruments, memorabilia and interactive exhibits. Popular attractions include Tupac’s Lyrics Diary, Supremes Dresses, Johnny Cash’s Fender Mark, and Mick Jagger’s Wardrobe. No matter who you are, the genre’s awe-inspiring history will thrill you as you make your way through the museum’s seven stories.
- Address: 1100 E 9th St, Cleveland, OH 44114
- Hours: Monday to Wednesday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Thursday and Sunday 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., Friday 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Admission: From $ 30
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